Tracy Haddow is the executive director of the 100 Mile District Hospice Palliative Care Society. (Patrick Davies photo - 100 Mile Free Press)

Tracy Haddow is the executive director of the 100 Mile District Hospice Palliative Care Society. (Patrick Davies photo - 100 Mile Free Press)

Hospice looking for new volunteers in 100 Mile House

The 100 Mile District Hospice Palliative Care Society is on the hunt for new volunteers.

Executive director Tracy Haddow said she is looking for a dozen people willing to volunteer their time to help individuals and their families. This fall hospice will be running a series of training workshops to prepare their new volunteers for the job.

“It’s 30 hours of training so it’s pretty intensive and we do a lot of self-reflection and learning of skills. We want to help people feel really confident and be able to give really good support to people who have a lot going on in their life,” Haddow said. “(Our clients) need someone who can listen well and support them as they try to figure out how they want to move forward.”

Haddow explained the ideal hospice candidates are compassionate and empathetic people with spare time who’d like to give back to their community. She remarked they’d especially like to recruit some men this time around, noting there is always a demand for them.

“Sometimes the fit is just so nice to have some men involved in supporting people in our community.”

The training is set to take place over the course of two weekends with the first session set for Sept. 30 and Oct 1 and the second from Oct 14-15. During the course, Haddow said they’ll be focusing on the importance of listening and communication skills, how to broach topics of loss and spiritual care, advanced care planning, navigating family dynamics, setting healthy boundaries and the key importance of confidentiality.

“We become a part of the team so you work alongside the individuals, doctors and nurses involved in home and community care. We focus on supporting the individual and the family.”

Currently, Haddow said they have around nine volunteers who regularly ‘sit’ with families. They have several others who help out around the office, which is also an option for those looking to get involved.

Volunteering is one of the most rewarding things people can do, Haddow added and is a great way to give back to the community. She encourages anyone interested in volunteering to reach out to hospice at 250-395-7680 to ask for an application form.

“A lot of people think hospice is just last days but it’s really not. We’re involved from the point of diagnosis… we’re there to help people and individuals find ways to make the most of, enjoy and have quality in their life,” Haddow said. “There’s not too many people that haven’t had some experience with grief, loss or personal illness that has caused us to think about life and the quality of our life and the meaning of life. Hospice is an amazing way to support others in the community, it’s very rewarding.”

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